d&m yes m!ch!gan boxcar #2463

In the early 1980s, the State of Michigan introduced a tourism marketing plan called "Say Yes! to Michigan" - which morphed into a simplified "YES M!CH!GAN" slogan that was adopted as a paint scheme on a handful of Michigan short line railroads. The Detroit & Mackinac participated with the State in this promotion, offering up outside rib boxcar #2463 for the campaign. Painted a deep blue with an aluminum roof, the D&M "Yes M!CH!GAN" boxcar did not escape railfan cameras. 

My N Scale version of #2463 began life as an Atlas Master 50' rib side boxcar lettered for the Atlantic & Western. I chose this particular model because the colors were just about right and the factory lettering was very minimal. I bought the custom DM decals from Circus City in Baraboo, Wisconsin.

From left to right below you will see the raw materials, in-process stripping, and the finished 1/160 version of the car. Light weathering will be added before it joins the full roster of equipment on my layout - another quick and easy modeling project!

January 2, 2011 3.jpg

prototype photo courtesy RRPictureArchives.NET and Jack Smith

Materials.jpg
Stripped.jpg
Finished.jpg

Tips & techniques: it's never too late to stumble into modeling discoveries! In the past when I opted to strip and re-letter a piece of equipment, I just used an eXacto knife to scrape away the old markings. I figured I would be adding new letters and weathering, so no one would ever see the small scrapes and gouges. Then after I decided I didn't like the paint damage, I started using nail polish remover and Q-Tips. That prevented scrapes but required a lot of effort and sometimes the scrubbing action would go through the base paint.  With this project, given the Atlas donor unit was such a nice model, I let the nail polish sit on the old lettering for 60 seconds and then used a toothpick to carefully remove the lettering: worked like a charm!